Qatar to pay former Hamas civil servant salaries

Former Hamas premier Ismail Haniya delivers a speech in Gaza City, on March 23, 2014Ramallah (Palestinian Territories) (AFP) – Qatar is stepping in temporarily to help the new Palestinian unity government pay former employees of Islamist movement Hamas’s disbanded Gaza government, an official said Friday. The Gulf state said it would contribute a total of $60 million (44 million euros) while the Palestinian Authority grapples with a pay row, the first challenge for a government formed to try to end years of Palestinian rivalry. Prime minister Rami Hamdallah “received a phone call from the Qatari prime minister (Sheikh Abdullah bin Naser bin Khalifa al-Thani), who told him that $20 million would be transferred each month for three months to pay Gaza employees,” government spokesman Ihab Bseiso said in a statement.

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